No host has claimed this podcast yet!
© 2020-2021 THE NEW YORK TIMES COMPANY; The New York Times encourages the use of RSS feeds for personal use in a news reader or as part of a non-commercial blog, subject to your agreement to our Terms of Service.
The New York Times presents
This is what the news should sound like. The biggest stories of our time, told by the best journalists in the world. Hosted by Michael Barbaro. Twenty minutes a day, five days a week, ready by 6 a.m.
September 19, 2021
The Sunday Read: ‘The Composer at the Frontier of Movie Music’
You have almost certainly heard Nicholas Britell’s music, even if you don’t know his name. More than any other contemporary composer, he appears to have the whole of music history at his command, shifting easily between vocabularies, often in the same film. His most arresting scores tend to fuse both ends of his musical education. “Succession” is 18th-century court music married to heart-pounding beats; “Moonlight” chops and screws a classical piano-and-violin duet as if it’s a Three 6 Mafia track. Britell’s C.V. reads like the setup for a comedy flick: a Harvard-educated, world-class pianist who studied psychology and once played in a moderately successful hip-hop band, who wound up managing portfolios on Wall Street. That is until he started scoring movies, and quickly acquired Academy Award nominations. “What I’ve found in the past,” said Jon Burlingame, a film-music historian, “is that people have found it impossible to incorporate such modern musical forms as hip-hop into dramatic underscore for films. When Nick did it in ‘Moonlight,’ I was frankly stunned. I didn’t think it was possible.”
September 17, 2021
A Broadway Show Comes Back to Life
This episode contains strong language. “Six,” a revisionist feminist British pop musical about the wives of King Henry VIII, was shaping up to be a substantial hit on Broadway after finding success in London. On its opening night, however, in March 2020, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a shutdown of theater that would wind up lasting a year and a half. We speak to the cast and crew of “Six” about the show’s path back to the stage and explore what it tells us about the trials of Broadway during the pandemic. Guest: Michael Paulson, a theater reporter for The New York Times.
September 16, 2021
The United States v. Elizabeth Holmes
When Elizabeth Holmes founded Theranos, the blood testing start-up, she was held up as one of the next great tech innovators. But her company collapsed, and she was accused of lying about how well Theranos’s technology worked. Now she is on trial on fraud charges. The case against Ms. Holmes is being held up as a referendum on the “fake it till you make it” culture of Silicon Valley, but it’s also about so much more. Guest: Erin Griffith, a reporter covering technology start-ups and venture capital for The New York Times.
September 15, 2021
Mexico’s Path to Legalizing Abortion
In a major turn of events in Mexico, which has one of the largest Catholic populations in the world, its Supreme Court last week decriminalized abortions. The Supreme Court ruling is a milestone for Mexico’s feminist movement. But change might not come quickly: Abortion law is mostly administered at the state level in Mexico, much of the country remains culturally conservative, and many Mexican medical workers are morally opposed to abortion. In a country where polls indicate most people don’t believe that abortion should be legal, what effect will the ruling have in practice? Guest: Natalie Kitroeff, a correspondent covering Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean for The New York Times.
September 14, 2021
A Hidden Shame in Nursing Homes
For decades, the law has sought to restrain nursing homes from trying to control the behavior of dementia patients with antipsychotic drugs, which are known to have adverse health effects. An alarming rise in schizophrenia diagnoses suggests some homes have found a way to skirt the rules. We hear the story of David Blakeney, a dementia sufferer whose health declined rapidly after he was placed in a South Carolina nursing home.
September 13, 2021
Biden’s Bet on Vaccine Mandates
As recently as a month ago, President Biden appeared to be skeptical about imposing coronavirus vaccine mandates. Now that skepticism has given way to a suite of policies that aim to force the hands of the unvaccinated. What has changed?
September 11, 2021
Special Episode: What Does It Mean to 'Never Forget'?
Two planes hijacked by Al Qaeda pierced the north and south towers of the World Trade Center. A third slammed into the Pentagon in Arlington, Va. A fourth crashed in an open field outside Shanksville, Pa. All in less than 90 minutes. What, exactly, do you remember? What stories do you tell when a casual conversation morphs into a therapy session? What stories do you keep to yourself? And what instantly transports you back to that deceptively sunny Tuesday morning? In a study of more than 3,000 people, what distinguished the memories of Sept. 11, when compared with ordinary autobiographical memories, was the extreme confidence that people had developed in their altered remembrances. Dan Barry, a longtime Times reporter, remembered “the acrid smell of loss drifting uptown through the newsroom’s open windows. The landfill. The funerals.” Today, he shares an essay about the effects of time on those memories.
September 10, 2021
‘We’re Going to Take Over the World’
On the internet, there are bizarre subcultures filled with conspiracy theorists — those who believe the coronavirus is a hoax or that the 2020 election was stolen, or even that Hillary Clinton is a shape-shifting lizard. It’s a way of thinking that can be traced back to the first real internet blockbuster, a 9/11 conspiracy documentary called “Loose Change.” Today, we explore the film’s impact.
September 9, 2021
‘I’m Part of Something That’s Really Evil’
This episode contains strong language. Terry Albury joined the F.B.I. just before the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, drawn in by the bureau’s work fighting child exploitation. His role quickly changed after 9/11 however, and he subsequently spent over a decade working in counterterrorism. Around 2015, he began to deeply question his work. “This is not what I joined the F.B.I. to do,” he recalled thinking. His doubts about the bureau’s workings led him to leak classified information to journalists. Today, we hear his story.
September 8, 2021
The Summer of Delta
This summer was supposed to be, in the words of President Biden, the “summer of freedom” from the coronavirus. What we saw instead was the summer of the Delta variant. The surge driven by Delta — which has seen rises in cases, hospitalizations and deaths across the United States — has underlined that we are far from being done with the pandemic.
September 7, 2021
How Will the Taliban Rule This Time?
Since the Taliban took over Kabul, Afghanistan’s capital, last month, many have wondered what kind of rulers they will be. The memory of the Taliban of the 1990s — the public executions, the whippings in the streets and the harsh rules preventing women from leaving the house unaccompanied — has filled some with fear. This time around, what will their rule mean for ordinary Afghans?
September 3, 2021
How Texas Banned Almost All Abortions
In a way, the new Texas law that has effectively banned abortions after six weeks is typical — many other Republican-led states have sought to ban abortions after six, 10 or 15 weeks. But where federal courts have routinely struck down other anti-abortion laws, the Texas legislation has gone into effect with the Supreme Court’s blessing. How has this law survived so far, and where does it leave abortion providers in the state?
September 2, 2021
New Orleans in the Aftermath of Hurricane Ida
After Hurricane Ida hit New Orleans, leaving destruction in its wake, comparisons with Hurricane Katrina were made. There are, however, big differences between the two disasters — namely that the city, in the 16 years since Katrina, has heavily invested in flood defenses. But on the ground, there is little cause for celebration. What has happened in the aftermath of Ida and what does the increasing frequency of climate extremes mean for a city like New Orleans?
September 1, 2021
The Education Lost to the Pandemic
The closure of schools because of the pandemic and the advent of widespread virtual learning has impacted students of all ages — but particularly the youngest children. Research suggests that the learning missed during this period could have lasting impacts. What is the educational cost of pandemic learning and how are schools trying to get children back to class amid the Delta variant?
August 31, 2021
America’s Final Hours in Afghanistan
On Monday night, after a 20-year war that claimed 170,000 lives, cost over $2 trillion and did not defeat the Taliban, the United States completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan. As the last of the American forces left under the cover of darkness, there was celebratory gunfire from the Taliban. The moment of exit, a day earlier than expected, was both historic and anticlimactic. We explore what happened in the last few hours and days of the American occupation, and look at what it leaves behind.
August 30, 2021
The Tale of California’s Recall Election
Almost from the moment Gavin Newsom was elected governor of California, there were attempts to remove him from office. Initially, a recall election against him seemed highly unlikely — but the pandemic has changed things. What is behind the recall effort against Mr. Newsom, and what happens next?
August 29, 2021
The Sunday Read: ‘How Long Can We Live?’
Jeanne Calment lived her entire life in the South of France. She filled her days with leisurely pursuits, enjoying a glass of port, a cigarette and some chocolate nearly every day. In 1997, Ms. Calment died. She was 122. With medical and social advances mitigating diseases of old age and prolonging life, the number of exceptionally long-living people is increasing sharply. But no one is known to have matched, let alone surpassed, Ms. Calment’s record. Longevity scientists hold a wide range of nuanced perspectives on the future of humanity. Some consider life span to be like a candle wick, burning for a limited time. While others view it as a supremely, maybe even infinitely elastic band. As the eminent physicist Richard Feynman put it in a 1964 lecture, “There is nothing in biology yet found that indicates the inevitability of death.”
August 27, 2021
The Bombings at the Kabul Airport
For days, many dreaded an attack on Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, as Western forces scrambled to evacuate tens of thousands of people from Afghanistan. On Thursday, those fears were realized — amid the large crowds outside the airport, terrorists carried out two suicide bombings. The attacks killed at least 60 people, including 13 United States service members. ISIS-K, a branch of the Islamic State in Afghanistan, has claimed responsibility. Will these attacks be the effective end of the U.S. evacuation effort and where does this leave the Afghanistan mission? Guest: Matthieu Aikins, a writer based in Afghanistan for The New York Times.
August 26, 2021
Biden’s Border Dilemma
Early on in the Biden administration, it rolled out a two-pronged migration plan: A reversal of the most punitive elements of Donald Trump’s policy and rooting out the causes of migration from Central America, namely corruption. There is, however, a conflict at the heart of this approach. Calling out corrupt leaders could destabilize nations and encourage migration in the short term. We explore the calculus of the Biden administration’s migration policy. Guest: Natalie Kitroeff, a correspondent covering Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean for The New York Times.
August 25, 2021
The Race to Evacuate Kabul
Since the fall of Kabul to the Taliban last week, everything and everyone has been focused on Hamid Karzai International Airport and the massive military operation to get thousands of Americans and Afghan allies out of the country. It is a monumental challenge — one of the biggest and most complicated military operations the Pentagon has had to deal with in decades. We explore these complexities and the challenges being faced by the U.S. as it attempts to evacuate the city. Guest: Eric Schmitt, a senior writer covering terrorism and national security for The New York Times.